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Big Five Safari at Sanbona Wildlife Reserve

Big Five Safari at Sanbona Wildlife Reserve near Montagu on Route 62 in South Africa.

Natural Body Products from the Renosterveld

“Let you skin be pampered by the Renosterveld”

The White Lion Lodge has introduced Natural Body Products, produced by Liana from the Kogman and Keisie Organic Farm in Montagu.

The products are hand mixed by Liana, lovingly formulated with a range of oils that reflect the Renosterveld/Fynbos, one of the biome’s found on the Reserve.  She uses no chemicals that are detrimental to human and environmental health, specifically no parabens, sulphates, mineral oils and obviously no animal testing.

 At present the range includes a wonderfully scented Fynbos/Renosterveld Liquid Soap and Body Lotion, Sea Salt Bath Scrub and Soak and a selection of Healing Balms. The balms are made from beeswax and propolis from the area and a blend of Fynbos/Renosterveld essential oils to specifically target skin irritations (Healing Balm) headaches and sleeplessness (Happy Balm) and an all around luxurious balm for hands and lips (Nurture Balm).


Ingredients from the Fynbos/Renosterveld used in the Soap and Lotion:

Rose Geranium - Pelargonium Graveolens oil
Lavender - Lavendula Angustifolia oil
Wild Rosmary – Eriocephalus africanus/tenuipes oil
Buchu Oil – Agathosma Betulina oil
Olive – Olea Europaea oil

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Important Information For Our Guests Traveling From Cape Town

Important Information For Our Guests Traveling From Cape Town

Update March 12, 2018

New Blastings planned in autumn 2018:

Thursday 15 March 2018 Blasting
Tuesday 20 March 2018 Blasting
Thursday 22 March 2018 Blasting
Tuesday 27 March 2018 Blasting

Tuesday 10 April 2018 Blasting
Thursday 12 April 2018 Blasting
Tuesday 17 April 2018 Blasting
Thursday 19 April 2018 Blasting
Tuesday 24 April 2018 Blasting

Thursday 03 May 2018 Blasting
Tuesday 08 May 2018 Blasting
Thursday 10 May 2018 Blasting
Tuesday 15 May 2018 Blasting
Thursday 17 May 2018 Blasting

Future dates will be confirmed at a later stage.

The major blasting required in Cogmanskloof is complete, so scheduled road closures have been suspended until further notice. Occassional road closures my be required from time to time to eable necessary services to be installed.


From November 2015 to December 2016 the Cogmanskloof, Eastern Side of Montagu might be closed on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 11.00 -13.00 for Blasting.

Alternative Route to the White Lion Lodge on Sanbona Wildlife Reserve, coming from the N1:

Drive through Ashton and turn right direction Swellendam (R60) for approx. 45km.
In Swellendam turn onto the N2 direction Heidelberg. After 11 km turn left onto the R324 for ca. 15 km. You will drive through Suurbraak.
Than turn left, stay on the R324 for another 17km. You will drive over the Tradouw Pass.
Thereafter you turn left onto the R62 and after 20km turn right onto the Sanbona Road.


If you travel the N2 from Cape Town, carry on going until you turn off onto the R324.

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Travel Blog Posting by Chris

Many thanks to Chris for his posting in the Blog!
Let's start reading...

"For years I wanted to go on a safari and for my birthday this year, I decided to make it happen. Since we stayed in Cape Town, I researched a lot of Safari lodges that were nice and not too far from the city. White Lion Lodge is about 3.5h from Cape Town and the drive was scenic and easy to do.
The lodge had just a few accommodations (8 people max). Lunch and dinner was served in a communal style, so you are all sitting on one large table, which is something I had not experienced before, but it was a nice way to connect with fellow guests. The main lodge housed the dining area and a living room style space with a fire place..."

Read more:

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White Lions (Documentary)

The white lion is a rare colour mutation of the Kruger subspecies of lion (Panthera leo krugeri) found in some wildlife reserves in South Africa and in zoos around the world. White lions are not albinos.
Their white colour is caused by a recessive trait derived from a less-severe mutation in the same gene that causes albinism. They vary from blonde to near-white. This coloration does not appear to disadvantage their survival.

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Visa brochure for children travelling to SA

New SA immigration requirement states that minors should travel with an unabridged birth certificate, which names the child’s mother and father – or the equivalent thereof - from their country of origin.
The new regulation due in June 2015 is to be put in place as a means to curb child trafficking across SA's borders.

Read the Leaflet of Department of Home Affairs (DHA) here.

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Guest comment

Last year we won an auction prize bid, Two night Accommodation at White Lion Lodge in Sabona Game Reserve near Barrydale.
We have recently returned from this most wonderful experience.

Our accommodation was luxurious, we fell in love with the lodge and it's stunning design, attention to detail and beautiful views.

Guest comment on Sanbona Wildlife Reserve

The lodge had their own ranger, Israel. He was a brilliant, knowledgeable, entertaining, passionate guide and ensured that we made the most of our Karoo experience. We learned  so much about plant life on the early evening game drives. We saw four of the Big Five, only missing out on the elusive leopard. In all we did four game drives. We saw the Male White Lion and his tawny lioness at very close quarters.  
Sabona Reserve is the most stunning place.

Gerry and her staff were very friendly and ensured that our stay was memorable.
We very much enjoyed our meals and the local wines.

Please could you through Echo, thank Gerry for her very generous donation and let all your members know that this amazing experience is just three hours away (from Cape Town).

Robert and Liz, November 2014

More reviews and comments in our guest book.

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Guest Review

No expense spared. The lodge had everything you could want. Only the second lodge with a bidet. We have visited S/A for the past 11 year sand would return to White Lion again, God willing next year. We are very senior citizens, but found the people resident people so helpful new almost felt young again. Israel's knowledge of the animals and the local fauna was great. Would like to have spent many more hours talking to him to glean a worth while opinion of life in South Africa for a coloured person. Do hope you find the time to stay ay this lodge which really did make our holiday.

Barry Enon [via http://bookthespot.com]


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White Lions

White Lions

The White Lions at the Sanbona Wildlife Reserve

White Lions are real lions with a special gene. This gene affects the hair colour and the colour of the pads. Sometimes the colour of the nose and the eyes are also different. The gene inhibits the amount of pigment in the hair shaft. White lions have a colour range from blonde through to a bright white. This is a short story about the first White Lions released to the wilderness at the Sanbona Wildlife Reserve.

While this gene is recessive it appears again after several generations. Today White Lions are not wild anymore. There live in zoos or breeding stations around the world. It was a vision from Dr. Gaston Savoi to reintroduce White Lions into the wilderness. And the perfect spot to realise it was the Sanbona Wildlife Reserve with 54000 hectare Karoo wilderness.

What a long term project with no experience before? The team with years of wildlife knowledge decided to introduce a breeding pair first. If they minimize all contact with humans the new generations of cubs will grow up in the wilderness. The vision could come true.

And really the first cubs were born in 2004. Three cubs and they are all male. Step by step they were released into fenced areas of the reserve. The males grow up and learnt how to live in the wilderness and most important how to hunt their own game. What a first step and the next were following.

Sanbona Wildlife Reserve is also home of wild tawny lions. So it was possible to integrate the three male White Lions into a group with two tawny females. Together their shown all the social lion behaviours like playing, grooming and more hunting skills. The coalition of the brothers also patrols their territory. And so it happened that the next generation of White Lions were born and grow up.

White Lions

The years are coming and going and today there are still White Lions at the Sanbona Wildlife Reserve. Visit the White Lion Lodge and enjoy the hospitality in the lodge and the wilderness around. And maybe you will see the White Lions on one of your game drives.

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Goodbye Madiba

Goodbye Madiba

The world will never be the same without you. Words cannot describe the emptiness in the hearts of every South African.
For today there is no Rainbow in our nation.

May peace walk with you for all Eternity and may you live forever in the hearts of many.
Staff of the White Lion Lodge

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Tylecodon paniculatus "Butter-Tree"

Tylecodon paniculatus "Butter-Tree"

The Butter-Tree has a succulent shrub-let that is up to 1.8 m tall when in flower, with a thick basal stem of approximately 60 cm in diameters. This tree has bright green paddle- shaped leaves that are 12 cm long and 10 cm wide. Its orange to red flowers are about 15- 20 mm in diameter. The Butter- tree blossoms during summer and are found in clay soils in the Spekboomveld, Gwarrievelds and rocky slopes from Namibia to the South-Western Cape and the Eastern Cape. Its flowers are pollinated sunbirds.

As a kid I found Butter-tree rides to be great fun. This sport is in fact the pre- curser of today’s modern skating-board. In the past, children and often myself used these age- old plants to slide down steep slopes. To begin, you first had to wet the skating ring with water to get a smooth muddy surface. A thick part of the stem is then chopped away until the gooey slime is visible- which is evidence of the water storage capacity of the plant in the dry warm summers of the Klein- Karoo. You then take position on top of the skating- ring (skate- board), grab the roots with both hands to serve as a steering wheel and there you go- full speed down the hill.

After several rides with the Butter-Tree “board”, the slope becomes very slippery and one can really go fast. Make sure that you stay on top of it until the end. If it slides away underneath you, you will definitely have some scratches and bruises. Although it caused a lot of injuries it resulted in great excitement and pleasure.

There are different types of Butter-Tree’s that the farmers do not like. These are the Tylecodon wallichii and T. Ventricosus species which contains “alkaloid” that causes shrinkage in animals.

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